The core remains the same. The focus is different.

User experience has become a key differentiating factor in the digital world. So important that it’s a make or a break. Do you remember one product, in recent times, that has become a success without good user experience? But there are hundreds of examples of innovative products that crashed badly due to poor user experience.

As user experience took centre stage in the product development, we saw increased focus from businesses to create experiences that boost usability and result in user delight. This saw the emergence of a new breed of professionals specializing in . We had designers, architects etc. copywriters are the latest addition to the club. Not exactly the latest as Google, Amazon etc., are hiring copywriters since 2016.

Let’s go back by 5 years. The drill, while building a website, was-

Designers will create the design with “Lorem Ipsum” filled in as text.

The design will land into the copywriter’s desk who will then craft the as per the design.

There will be a few iterations and tweaks to accommodate copy or design elements and ‘Voila!’ the site is ready to go live.

A decade back, the copywriter would create the copy, send it to designer and he will design the page accordingly. Copy or content was the King then. You could compromise design but not copy.

Today UX is the king. UX encompasses various elements like design, interface, copy etc., to create good human-software engagement. Designing awesome experiences require deep understanding of the product, the technology driving it and the user behavior. There’s an increasing overlap between technology, design and copy which necessitates a new skill set of UX copywriters with understanding of communication, design and technology.

What exactly is the job of a UX writer and how it is different from a copywriter?

Here’s what Google’s job description for UX writer –

How is the role of a UX copywriter different from that of a copywriter?

The focus is different.

A UX copywriter needs to be someone with exceptional writing abilities just like a copywriter. However, their role varies in the focus. A copywriter’s job is to inform, educate, convince and sell. A UX copywriter’s job is to help the user solve his problem, use the product and help him have fun using the product. His focus needs to be in understanding a user’s pain points and behavior to create engaging experiences. He cannot do it alone. Neither the designer and other members of UX team. And that’s why UX are an integral part of the UX team.

Early entry into a project.

Copywriters mostly play their part in the middle and last phase of the project development. However, the role of an UX writer starts very early in the project as he needs to get a deep understanding of the user as well as the project. So, he is a part of the audience research to understand who is the user, how he will interact with the product etc. He also tries to understand the product from the wireframe/prototype stage to boost the usability and functionality of the product.

Wider collaboration.

A copy writer’s collaboration is limited to working with designer’s and sales/marketing teams. A UX writer has to collaborate widely with development, business, legal, strategy and marketing teams to understand their perspectives and bring it on the product experience. They need to establish cohesive language and a unified voice across platforms.

Data driven.

Both UX writers and copywriters need to be data driven. However, the set of data they need to keep an eye on is different. A copywriter is interested in metrics related to content or copy of the page like time spent, bounces, clicks and conversions etc., whereas a UX writer needs to be interested in metrics related to product usage like daily sessions, Daily active usage, stickiness, efficiency, ease of use, goal completions and user satisfaction etc.

Can a copywriter graduate into a UX writer?

Yes and it’s happening. Most of the UX writers have background in writing. As said earlier, you need exceptional writing abilities to be a UX writer. So copywriters have that. Beyond it, they need to go a little deep into understanding technology, design and behavior psychology to be a good UX writer.

Enjoyed reading this post? Please follow and clap. Also, share your views and experiences on UX writing in the comments below.

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Are UX writers same as Copy Writers? was originally published in UX Planet on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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